HOUSEBREAKINGS have doubled across East Ayrshire forcing police to add extra patrols in the area.

A new report left detectives branding the figures as an ‘alarming rise’ in the community.

The findings revealed that there have been 120 offences between April and July compared to just 69 last year.

It also uncovered that most incidents saw criminals sneak into residents homes more than businesses.

However it did show that Cumnock and Doon Valley have actually seen a decrease in house break ins as they plunged from 16 to just six, the lowest in any East Ayrshire area.

But police still want residents to remain vigilant and make sure their homes are secure to avoid any attacks on their property.

A community officer said: “We will continue to use intelligence and forensics to identify, target and arrest individuals suspected to be involved in housebreaking.

“We will patrol relevant areas to prevent, deter and detect crimes of dishonesty.”

The report said: “Unfortunately there has been a notable rise in house breaking in particular dwelling houses.

“As recent as last month one individual has been identified as being responsible for 12 of these and is currently remanded in custody.

“Work is ongoing to identify further repeat offenders with hopefully achieving t he same outcome. Analytical work is ongoing to identify key times and locations and already additional patrols are taking place to impact on this alarming rise.”

Chief superintendent Mark Hargreaves said: “We have a small number of prolific offenders and we have made arrests.”